Migration Watch UK: 'immigration costs, but we need to see full picture'

'By virtue of living here we cost the state', Migration Watch claim immigrants cost the Exchequer billions of pounds each year

The immigration expert was commenting on a new report about the subject

Monday, June 20, 2016

A new Migration Watch UK report has revealed immigrants cost the exchequer billions of pounds each year – but vice chair Alp Mehmet claims it's all dependent on how long you're here.

The research has revealed that immigrants cost the Exchequer £4-17bn a year, and that only migrants who arrived from 2001, have made a "net positive fiscal contribution."

"Overall, it's a net cost. The main report that said that it was an overall cost was from University College London," he told Julia Hartley-Brewer.

"That actually said between 1995 and 2011, there was a cost of something between 100 billion and 149 billion, so there's no question that overall there's a net cost, and that's when you take in to account everything.

"By virtue of living here, we cost the state. It's not simply a case of the tax credits we get or the benefits we get, but public services.

"Of course, immigration is a good thing, and no one is suggesting immigration in itself is bad."

Memmet also stated that it depends on the financial services used by each person.

"If you're here a long time, you start getting pensions, then in fact you end up being a net taker. But that depends on how long you've been here, that's why we're looking at recent arrivals.

"It’s really wrong simply to say 'they are net contributors'. That in fact is not a problem in itself, there's no economic problem there, all we're saying is there's lots to consider with regard to migration, but simply accepting without question that a net contribution from all immigrants is simply wrong."

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